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Promotion and Dissemination of Refugee Law

Executive Committee Meetings

Promotion and Dissemination of Refugee Law
No. 51 (XXXIX) - 1988

10 October 1988
Executive Committee 39th session. Contained in United Nations General Assembly Document No. 12A (A/43/12/Add.1). Conclusion endorsed by the Executive Committee of the High Commissioner's Programme upon the recommendation of the Sub-Committee of the Whole on International Protection of Refugees.

The Executive Committee,

Reaffirming that the promotion and dissemination of refugee law is one of the fundamental responsibilities of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and is directly related to the effective international protection of refugees;

Recalling Conclusion No. 42 (XXXVII) on Accession to International Instruments and their Implementation and Conclusion No. 43 (XXXVII) being the Geneva Declaration on the 1951 United Nations Convention and the 1967 Protocol relating to the Status of Refugees adopted at its thirty-seventh session;

1. Reiterated the need for promoting a wider knowledge and understanding of the principles of refugee law and protection and for intensified activities by UNHCR in the area of the promotion and dissemination of refugee law subject to the availability of sufficient resources for this purpose and with the active co-operation and support of States.

2. Called upon all States which have not yet done so to accede to the 1951 United Nations Convention and the 1967 Protocol relating to the Status of Refugees and, if applicable, to the 1969 Organization of African Unity (OAU) Convention governing the specific aspects of refugee problems in Africa in order to ensure the widest possible application of the basic principles of refugee law.

3. Welcomed the various initiatives undertaken by the High Commissioner in regard to the dissemination of refugee law including through publications and the various information services offered by the Centre for Documentation on Refugees as well as through co-operation with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) who play an indispensable role in the promotion of refugee law.

4. Underlined the need to develop practical applications of refugee law and principles and the importance of training courses in refugee law and protection to be undertaken or facilitated by UNHCR for governmental and other officials involved in refugee activities and urged States to initiate or collaborate in the organization and implementation of such courses as well as to undertake similar promotional activities to benefit other interested target groups.

5. Requested UNHCR to provide information to the Executive Committee on specific promotional activities worldwide including their financial implications on a regional basis.